What are the Prominent Kingdoms mentioned in Padma Purana? Swarga Khanda of Padma Purana explains the list of prominent Kingdoms (Janapadas) of Bharatavarsha.
Once, sages requested Suta to describe about the most prominent places of pilgrimage situated in Bharatavarsha. Suta commenced his narration by describing the origin of creation and then switched over to the geographical characteristics of Bharatavarsha.
Suta said —
‘There are seven prominent mountain ranges in Bharatavarsha–Mahendra, Malay, Sahya, Shaktiman, Rikshavan, Vindhya and Pariyatra.
Some prominent rivers supplying potable water to the inhabitants of Bharatavarsha are—Ganga, Sindhu, Saraswati, Godwari, Narmada, Shatadru, Yamuna, Vipasha, Mahanadi, Vidisham, Varuna etc.
The names of the main Janapadas situated in the northern part of Bharatavarsha are Kuru, Panchal, Shalva, Matreya, Jangal, Shoorsen, Pulind, Baudh, Chedi, Matsya, Bhoj, Sindhu, Utkal, Koshal, Madra, Kalinga, Kashi, Malav, Magadh, Videh, Anga, Banga, Surashtra, Kekay, Kashmir and Gandhar. Similarly, Janpadas like Dravid, Keral. Prachya, Karnatak, Kuntal, Chol, Sauhrid, Kona, Korak, Kalad, Mushal and Sutap are situated in the southern part of Bharatavarsha.
Suta then described about the greatness of Pushkar tirth by recounting an incident related with the Pandavas—
“One day, Sage Narada visited the Pandavas who were living in exile. The Pandavas had visited many places during the course of their exile period and wanted to know about the fruits they had acquired due to their pilgrimage.
“Sage Narada then recounted an incident when king Dilip had once posed the same question to Sage Vashishtha. Sage Vashishtha while describing about the greatness of Pushkar said—Pushkar tirth is the holiest place where lord Brahma has his abode. Deities consider themselves fortunate to be at Pushkar. A person who takes a holy dip at Pushkar and worships lord Brahma acquires virtues equivalent to the accomplishment of the Ashwamedha Yagya.”
Sage Vashishtha continued with the description of some other prominent places of pilgrimage like Jambumarg, Narmada Amarkantak etc.